Reflections and Projections

Gearing Up For The Final Release

Gearing Up For OpenLP 2.0

Those who hang around here regularly will know that we plan to release the final version of OpenLP 2.0 at the end of October. As one can imagine, with such a momentous release we'd like to make a big noise about it. Because OpenLP is open source, it is primarily driven by its users, whether they are developers, or just folks that hang out in the forums and want to help out in whatever way they can. With the upcoming release of version 2.0, we are going to need lots of help from YOU. Here's how you can help:

Web Site

We are in the process of completely rethinking the web site and making it more product-centric. We want to include some new elements in the site that we haven't relied on in our marketing previously.

One of the things we want to display on the new site are testimonials from users of OpenLP. If you use OpenLP, and like it, please either post your testimonial in the forums or e-mail it to support (at) openlp.org and we'll include it on the new site. Be genuine in your testimonial, mentioning what you like about OpenLP and why you use it. Don't be too shy of pointing out one or two things that currently irritate you about OpenLP, honest testimonials give a far better reflection than purely positive ones.

To be completely honest with you, hearing of a megachurch using OpenLP does far more for OpenLP's reputation than a small church. We will display all testimonials with equal status regardless of the church size, but we'd love to have some from the bigger churches out there.

We also want to show off photographs of OpenLP in action. If you have a high quality photograph of OpenLP in use in your church, we'd like to use it on the site. We have a couple on our Facebook page, but we want more and we want better ones. The minimum requirements for photographs are 5 megapixels on a proper digital camera, not a mobile/cellular phone. These too can be e-mailed to us at the address listed above.

Please be aware that not all testimonials and/or photographs will necessarily be accepted. We are looking for top quality content for our site, and if yours doesn't make the grade we won't include it. If you really want yours included, contact us and find out why it was not accepted, and we can work with you to bring it up to the inclusion standard.

User Guide

OpenLP User Guide

We're still looking for people to write and/or translate the user guide. It is already laid out, it just needs content. You don't need to be a developer to write it, we will help you get set up. The user guide uses a formatting system called reStructuredText, in a similar vein to Markdown or wiki formatting.

If you'd like to help out, please contact us at that same e-mail address, or via the contact page, and we'll get you up and running in no time at all.

Fixing Bugs

Bug Fixing

Of course we're still fixing bugs in OpenLP. If you come across any, please make sure to e-mail a full bug report to bugs (at) openlp.org.

If you encounter the error window, you *MUST* either use the E-mail button to e-mail us directly, or use the Save button to save the report to a file, and then send us that file. If you just send us an e-mail saying that an error occurred, we can't help you, or figure out what the bug is. The information in that error window is vital.

If you try to do something and it doesn't work, but it doesn't show the error window, please make sure you can reproduce the bug (can you do it again and again?) and list in as much detail as possible the steps you took to reproduce it. Also include which version of OpenLP, which operating system and its version, your distro and your desktop environment if you're using Linux, your graphics card, and any other information you think is important. For example:

Action Performed: I tried to add a new theme.

Expected Result: A new theme listed in the theme manager.

Actual Result: After running through the Theme Wizard successfully, my new theme did not appear in the theme manager. It did appear after restarting OpenLP though.

Steps to Reproduce:

  1. Click on the New Theme button in the Theme Manager.
  2. Run through the creation process, selecting any combination - this bug affects all of them.
  3. At the end of the process, click the finish button.
  4. Notice that the new theme is not visible in the Theme Mananger.
  5. Restart OpenLP and see the new theme.

Computer Details: Kubuntu Linux 12.10 (beta), LibreOffice 3.6, nVidia GeForce 5600, VLC 2.03

Before you submit a bug report, please search through our existing bug reports and make sure you're not reporting one that already exists. Additionally, we need to be able to reproduce your bug before we'll add it to that list, so your bug may not show up for a day or two. Relax, as long as you sent it to bugs (at) openlp.org, we have it and are looking into it.

Tutorials

OpenLP Tutorials

We are also still looking for more tutorials for how to use OpenLP. If you've written a blog post, we'd love to link to it. If you've recorded a screen cast, let us know so that we can include it in our playlist on YouTube. If you've written up a PDF or some other document, we have plenty of space to host it - e-mail it to us and we'll put it up.

If you have any other bright ideas on how to show people how to use OpenLP, we're very much open to them!

Marketing

Blog About It

Lastly, we need to generate buzz! If you have a blog, please blog about us. If your church has a web site, see if you can link back to our site. If you have a podcast or a vodcast, please feature us - we welcome interviews! Of course you can also find us on all the big social networks, like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google+.

We'll be releasing a press kit in a few days with helpful information and useful buttons and icons for people to use on their web sites and in their blog posts.

Any Other Help

If you think you can help us in another way not listed here, please contact us and let us know your ideas - we're always open to more ideas.

Bugs, Release Candidate 3 and the Final Release

As some folks are aware, the release date of OpenLP 1.9.12 was pushed back two weeks. This is because we currently do not have enough people testing out OpenLP and fixing bugs.

We Need Your Help

With the final release of OpenLP looming in October, we need as many people as possible testing out OpenLP and seeing how many new bugs we can find.

We Need Bugs Found (and Fixed)

We already have a list of known bugs, and would appreciate folks checking to see if they can reproduce those bugs, and filing more if bugs are encountered. Please note that missing functionality is not considered a bug.

We Need a New Website

One of the other needs we have before we release OpenLP is a new website design. If you're a rocking web designer, we want to see your mock ups of the site!

We Need a User Guide

There is the start of a user guide available, but unfortunately it has been forgotten due to time constraints. If you'd like to try you hand at completing it, or least contributing toward it, that too would really help.

Release Candidate 2 : "Ophthalmic Obadiah"

OpenLP 2.0 Release Candidate 2

This release arrives with a number of bug fixes and the inclusion of the remaining Song importers.

We are very proud to announce the Second  release candidate for OpenLP 2.0, codename "Ophthalmic Obadiah".

This new release, version 1.9.11, is a preview of what the final version of OpenLP will look like. This release does not contain any major new features, and mostly consists of bug fixes and minor enhancements.

There will be no more development on features in this version, all new development will happen in the next version of OpenLP.

Minor features and enhancements in OpenLP 1.9.11

  •  - New Sunday Plus , SongPro and Media Shout song importers
  •  - Print Service layout improvements
  •  - Undated translations inc new Slovak translation
  •  - Improvments in image's to the show in services

 Major bugs fixed in OpenLP 1.9.11:

  •  - Various fixes to Song importers
  •  - Bug fixes for Formatting tag dialogues

OpenLP 2.0 Release Parties

Cape Town

After much discussion, the developers have tentatively put the final release of OpenLP 2.0 in mid-October this year. This is a very auspicious occasion, since OpenLP 2.0 has been in development since September 2008. So after 4 long hard years of work, we can think of no better way to celebrate the release of OpenLP 2.0 than to throw a big party.

Unfortunately, being much of a global affair, it will be rather difficult to get everyone from around the world to the same place to celebrate the release of OpenLP 2.0. A better solution would be for people in various areas to host regional release parties.

There are a number of OpenLP developers living in the UK, and they are quite eager to get together for a release party. I live in Cape Town, South Africa, and I'm keen to host a release party here in Cape Town too.

If you are interested in attending a release party, or hosting a release party, please post your location in an appropriate release party topic in the forums. If there isn't a release party topic, create one!

Remember that release parties do not need to involve computers at all! You can get together at a local pub or restaurant, or host a bit of a party at someone's house. The release parties don't have to happen on the day of OpenLP's release either, they can be a week or two or three later. If you have any ideas of how to celebrate OpenLP's release, feel free to post your ideas in the forums too.

Android Release : 0.5 has escaped

OpenLP for Android

Following hot on the heels of the 1.9.10 release the next version of the Android client has escaped.

This client version works best with 1.9.10 but will also work (with restricted functionality) with other versions.

The new features added since 0.4 are:

  • Changes to the panels to allow them to be swiped left and right instead of only being accessed via the menu. This should improve  the usability of the application.
  • Provide the ability to poll the main application for updates. This will allow two users to work together. In the settings there is a "Refresh Displays" setting which allows the refresh time to be set. The default is 5 seconds and a refresh time of 0 seconds turns this feature off.
  • Following requests from a number of users it is now possible to have Server profiles for different locations. These are accessed again via the settings panel.
  • To aid usability, the displayed verse is now highlighted on the live tab so it is obvious which slide is selected.

Release Candidate 1: OpenLP 1.9.10 "Admirable Anna"

OpenLP 2.0 Release Candidate 1

We are very proud to announce the first release candidate for OpenLP 2.0, codename "Admirable Anna". This new release, version 1.9.10, is a preview of what the final version of OpenLP will look like. This release does not contain any major new features, and mostly consists of bug fixes and minor enhancements. There will be no more development on features in this version, all new development will happen in the next version of OpenLP.

Minor features and enhancements in OpenLP 1.9.10

  • OpenLP now has a portable version in PortableApps.com form
  • Users can now set a custom location for their data files
  • DreamBeam song importer
  • PowerSong importer
  • ZionWorx CSV song importer
  • Improved rendering times
  • Keep/restore selected book, chapters and verses when changing the bible translation in advanced search
  • Added a dialog to edit metadata of Bibles, and additional language options.
  • UI and usability improvements to the web remote

Major bugs fixed in OpenLP 1.9.10:

  • The new BibleGateway web site was causing issues with the web Bible importer
  • OpenLP did not exit properly on some Windows systems
  • Disabled VLC integration on FreeBSD due to it not being supported by VLC
  • Theme wizard now uses the current output display geometry when creating a thumbnail for a theme
  • Fixed a problem where newly imported Bibles would throw an error
  • Fixed most of the issues surrounding the progress bar for videos

Known issues:

When using song imports, if the filename or its folder contains non-ascii characters, then this may cause a crash. A workaround is to rename the file/use a different folder with plain a-z characters. Only affects imports from openlp.org 1.x, OpenLP 2.0, EasySlides, EasyWorship, PowerSong, and ZionWorx.

Getting Ready for the Final Release of OpenLP 2.0

Web Site

Are you a web designer? Do you know Drupal? We need you!

We're looking for a web designer who knows Drupal to redesign our web site for the upcoming OpenLP 2.0 launch later this year. We will be upgrading the web site to Drupal 7, and moving our forums over to Vanilla Forums, so we need someone who at least has experience with Drupal 7, and possibly experience with Vanilla Forums too. The theme needs to be based on our new logo and the colour scheme that goes with it. We can provide you with the SVG file, and any other help you need.

We're also looking for some people who can help maintain the site. This isn't a huge job, thanks to Drupal, but we do need folks who can troubleshoot any bugs that arise (there have been a couple since our recent upgrade to Drupal 6), and update the Drupal installation with newer versions of modules and the Drupal core when new minor releases come out.

Release Parties

Some people have also mentioned having regional release parties, similar to the Ubuntu Linux release parties. Please go ahead and try to organise a release party in your area, to celebrate the long-awaited final release of OpenLP 2.0. Release parties don't have to be anything fancy, just a couple of folk meeting somewhere to celebrate the new release of OpenLP 2.0 in a few months.

There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

Luke 2:36-38 NIV

More Video Tutorials

OpenLP Video Tutorials

Thanks to some hard work from one of our users, Joey Sour, we now have a whole bunch more video tutorials on how to use OpenLP! If you want to watch them, check out the A/V Tools page on his church's web site, where he has uploaded them.

In addition to Joey's videos, we have a couple of tutorials we've done ourselves on our YouTube channel. You can view those, plus Joey's and other videos from the community on our channel page.

OpenLP is Officially part of Ubuntu 12.10!

Ubuntu Linux

This week is only halfway through, and it has an exciting few days! First we found out that OpenLP has made it into Debian, and now I can proudly announce that OpenLP is part of Ubuntu as well (and Kubuntu, Lubuntu and Xubuntu by extension)!

OpenLP is in the "main" repository for Ubuntu 12.10, which means that when you install Ubuntu, you can immediately install OpenLP too. No more PPAs or extra repositories to enable.

We have also been able to get OpenLP "backported" into Ubuntu 12.04! This means that once you have enabled the "backports" repository (in Software Sources), you can also download and install OpenLP in Precise Pangolin.

Don't forget that you can find OpenLP in openSUSE and Fedora too.

OpenLP is Officially in the Debian Repositories!

Debian - The Universal Operating System

Ladies and gentlemen, I am extremely happy to announce that as from today you can install OpenLP in Debian Linux (unstable) by simply typing in apt-get install openlp - yes, that's right, OpenLP is in the Debian repositories.

This is a really significant step for OpenLP because a number of the really popular Linux distributions are based on Debian, and thus OpenLP will filter down into distributions like Ubuntu, Kubuntu and Linux Mint in the near future. For instance, you should find OpenLP in Ubuntu 12.10 when it comes out in October this year.